A response to the Change.org petition Stop Big Money in Ontario Politics
Dear petition supporters,
Thank you for signing the “Stop Big Money in Ontario Politics” petition on change.org, and speaking up for political fundraising reform in Ontario.
For years, the Green Party of Ontario has pushed for policies to get big money out of politics. We now have an historic opportunity to make our elections more democratic.
With Bill 201, the Liberal government has included some of the ideas that I shared with the Premier when we met on April 12.
In its current draft, the GPO supports:
- Banning corporate and union donations and loan guarantees,
- A per-vote allowance for political parties,
- Restrictions on third-party advertising leading up to and during an election,
- Establishing donation and spending limits for nomination contestants and leadership races , and
- Eliminating general and by-election contribution periods to a party.
As you know, however, there is more work to be done.
If the government is serious about getting big money out of politics, then they must revise Bill 201.
The GPO believes these changes are necessary to get the big money out of politics.
- Deep-pocketed donors can still buy access. Under the proposed new rules, rich donors can still contribute up to $7,750 to a political party, through donations to its central office, local associations and candidates. We must lower the total annual contribution limit to under $1,000. Quebec has an annual donation limit of $100.
- Political party spending limits are still too high. Currently $0.80 per elector. This means a party’s total campaign spending limit is around $7.4 million, based on the 2014 voters list of 9,248,764 electors.
- Continued subsidies for campaign expenses are wasteful. The GPO supports the complete elimination of the reimbursement of campaign expenses, not the reduction of the threshold from 15% to 10% proposed in Bill 201.
You can read our full explanation of recommended revisions here.
Thank you again for supporting a fair, transparent and democratic political fundraising system. Together we can shift the focus from raising big money to what really matters: the people of Ontario.
To learn more about the Green Party of Ontario visit us on our website at gpo.ca.
Leader of the Green Party of Ontario
P.S. Sign up for our latest news and events at www.gpo.ca/e-news